Understanding the SAP BusinessObjects SDKs: Part 1 – Managed BI for Application Developers
- Sharing – Allowing multiple users to access and view instances of reports, dashboards, or exploration documents.
- Scheduling – Enabling queries to run during off hours or to be coordinated with business processes.
- Administration – via a single central console so that an administrator can easily keep the systems running smoothly.
- Security and governance -- Providing personalized, role-based information access.
deployment. Developers often need to integrate with other products and services when developing and deploying business applications. The Managed APIs are designed to help you to fit your solution into the rest of your business environment.
- OpenDocument processes incoming URL requests for documents and any other viewable object type in your managed environment, and delivers the correct document to the end user in the appropriate viewer. It is the simplest way to integrate a custom report viewing experience into your portal application. With a single click, your business users can view their formatted business analytics without navigating any folder hierarchy.
- BI Launchpad provides a default viewing and sharing environment for all your hosted BI content.
- The Platform APIs for Content Integration allow you to integrate your content into your SharePoint or Java-based portal environment.
- The Platform APIs for Administration and Monitoring help you write automated tools to manage your environment.
- Content Viewing
that enables you to call other queries, reports, or transactions from a query or report in any SAP R/3 – based system to another R/3 – based system.
2. Content Sharing
One of the benefits of the BI Platform is that it hosts all of your content within a centralized repository that is accessible via a portal or custom application.
Managed BI enables you to extend your report and dashboard content throughout your business in multiple ways:
- Sharing through a BI portal known as BI Launch Pad, which is shipped with every copy of SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise, SAP BusinessObjects Edge, and Crystal Server Content can be integrated into Microsoft SharePoint 2010 or Office as live links
- Reports and dashboards can be shared via e-mail, file share, or Web server in popular export formats
- Subscription-based alerts allow users to be notified when data in a report crosses a specific threshold.
- Content can be delivered to most mobile devices, so your content can go with you
- Custom branding and theming for BI Launchpad is a key planned innovation for an upcoming release.
3. Content Integration
- Report Scheduling
- BI Launch Pad Customization
- SharePoint Integration
- Portal Integration
possible to set up a recurring schedule. For example, a report can be sent out to the territory managers every Monday at 6:00 a.m., so that they have it when
they login in the morning.
Some customers choose to use a single report for this process rather than creating multiple reports for each territory or for each manager, especially if there are multiple managers for a territory. SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise provides publishing functionality that allows for multi-pass report bursting, which allows one report for potentially thousands of recipients.
Most customers want to use the scheduling and publishing functionality as a means to off-load recurring processing of content or to provide a constantly updated repository of reports that an application can simply embed with updated data. From an SDK perspective, we provide custom processing options, allowing you to embed your compiled Java code into a running publishing job, so you can pre-process a report or copy it out to multiple file locations programmatically. This is part of the 3.1 solution, and continues in the 4.0 release.
4. Administration and Monitoring
The BI Platform provides six main feature areas focused on backend administration
- Platform Search
which objects that users and groups can access.
Managed BI also provides many administrative features beyond content storage and security. The monitoring capabilities of the server allow for real-time supervision of the entire deployment or of specific services to ensure that things are running smoothly.
Auditing is typically used to manage risk, and to monitor the capacity of your system. And using the platform search API, you can search for BI content stored in the BI Platform from Microsoft SharePoint or another custom application.
The new Open Search API allows you to launch a search across federated BusinessObjects deployments from your custom application, and get back objects that meet specific criteria.
As before, you can integrate your authentication with an existing Active Directory or LDAP installation. The security features allow you to manage
which objects that users and groups can access.
SAP Crystal Server (formerly known as SAP Crystal Reports Server) shares the platform APIs with SAP Edge and SAP BusinessObjects BI, so most sample code and API documentation you see will work on any one of the three solutions. The exceptions are code samples interacting with content types or servers not supported in Crystal Server, such as SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP. The BI Platform API requires version 4.x or 3.x of the BI Platform.